Sunday, April 10, 2011

A Tutorial: On Having the Flu

The set-up:  Be completely unprepared.  Get both flu vaccines when they are kindly offered by your town.  Be aware that flu season is over.  Be in good health and reasonably good cheer, and try hard to get enough sleep.

The steps:

1.  On a Tuesday evening, say, begin to feel a little scratchy in your throat and chest.  Fear a cold!  Retreat to bed early and take a lot of Vitamin C.
2. Repeat in the morning.  Everyone else goes to work with colds, so get to work!  Mope around all day feeling shitty and making zombie noises.  Ask to leave a little early, retreat to bed with a runny nose, a cough, chest congestion, and a fever.  Eat way more Vitamin C.  Whine a little.  Watch most of the first season of Weeds.
3.  Have alarming fever-dreams about trying to keep your suburban marijuana business thriving, while ensuring all of your dealers are behaving.  Toss, turn, sweat.  Wake up and drink all the water.  Toss, turn, sweat some more.  Take a shower in the middle of the night.*

*In fact, until all symptoms disappear, take all the showers.  Four a day should do it.  In your weakened state lying in the bottom of the shower like a fetal shrimp while being pelted with hot water is your happy place.  This is the only time the weird sinus pains will cease, and you will lack the willpower to get out of the shower before the hot water has run out.  Don't even think about showering standing up - it's not a good idea.

3a. In the morning, call out from work.  A plus: You won't even feel guilty about it this time! A minus: That is because you can barely get out of bed, your everything hurts, and you are miserable and pathetic and too tired even to whine about it.  Your hands hurt too much to knit.  They hurt too much to knitYour hands. . . . . they hurt too much to knit.

4.  Thank the people who bring you food and leave it on your doorstep, without actually approaching within five feet of them.  Wave through the screen door, with your hair all crazy like that girl from The Ring.  This cannot be avoided - you are taking all the showers, yet have no energy to brush your hair.  It's a look, go with it.

5. Watch all the things Netflix has to offer, and sometimes things on hulu.  Try to read, but you may be too dumb.  Watch puppy videos on youtube. 

6. Cancel any immediate appointments.  Hope that Boyfriend will be home soon with Benadryl and tissues, because you have been through TWO rolls of toilet-paper-as-tissues in ONE day.  Stick tissues up nose if you must.

7.  Optimistically reserve a place at the writing workshop you want to go to on Sunday.  It's only Thursday, right?  You'll be all better by Sunday. . . right?!

8.  After watching four hours of a documentary about the Circus, have scary circus fever dreams.  Freak out a little bit when you realize your fever is rising a degree every two hours.  Deliriously try to call and make an appointment at your doctor's office at 2:30 in the morning.

9.  It is now Friday.  Go to the doctor after they call you back during their foolish business hours (9 am? why so late?).  Get nose swabbed.  Find out you have the flu.  Shake fist at sky and go sit outside so no one else will catch your plague while you wait for your ride. 

To be continued.  Too tired to keep typing.


  1. ::hugs like crazy::

    I feel for you! I've had the flu twice so far, both times in April. I've got my fingers/toes/eyes/knitting needles crossed that this year will be flu-free. Somehow you still manage to make the worst-sick-I've-ever-had sound amusing, if not fun.

    I've been have crazy dreams all weekend without a fever to blame it on. Nothing about weed or circus clowns though.

    I hope you feel better soon. Flus are the least fun.

  2. I am the slowest poke!

    Thanks for your well-wishing, I am doing much better now. If my cough doesn't leave me by next week I'll be going back to the doctor, but I'm out and about and functioning - flu eternity averted!